There is now a safe and comfortable way for your pets to fly the skies, Pet Airways. The airline was created after the realization that dogs shouldn’t be considered as cargo. Why should the airlines punish dogs if they are not small enough to fit into a purse or under the seat?
Starting out in 5 major cities (New York, Washington DC, Chicago, Denver, and Los Angeles.), Pet Airways has created Pet Lounges at certain airports where you drop your dog off for their own flight. No humans, besides the Pet Attendants and Pilots of course, are allowed on these flights. I'm imagining the noise once the cabin is filled with dogs and cats, and I think I'd rather go for an uncomfortable seat and a crying baby sitting next me.
Here’s how your pet’s traveling adventure goes on Pet Airways:
Drop your pet off at the Pet Lounge at the airport – Just drop your friend off with his travel carrier at least 2 hours before the flight.
Potty break before flight – The Pet Airways staff is aware of your dog’s schedule, and makes sure everyone gets potty breaks before their flight.
Pet Boards Airplane – The pets fly in a turbo-prop Beech 1900 airplane that has been stripped of its human amenities, so the private pet carriers can be comfortably placed and secured with the proprietary restraint system especially designed and created for the airline.
Pet Attendant looks after pet during flight – No inflight meal or champagne for dogs, but each pet onboard is checked on every 15 minutes. Once at the destination and off the plane, pets are given potty breaks before going to the Pet Lounge for pickup.
Pick up your pet at the airport Pet Lounge – When you get your dog, you can be sure that your dog wasn’t treated as luggage and traveled in the main cabin of the plane. If you aren’t able to pickup right away, they offer overnight boarding.
The rates seem to be very reasonable too. If you have never flown a dog on an airline, know one thing, it isn't cheap! Looks like Pet Airways will run deals and specials just like any other airline.
I thought this encompassed what Pet Airways is doing: “You see, on Pet Airways, your pets aren't packages, they're ‘pawsengers.’ And every step of the journey, we'll take care of them as if they were our own.”
As a person who loves my dog and cares for his safety (and would worry if he were in the cargo area), I think that Pet Airways is kind of a no-brainer when it comes to traveling with your dog. The only disadvantage I see right now is the limited airports and lounge locales. Traveling with your dog is already a hassle; driving all over the place right before or after a vacation could add unnecessary frustration.